If you do what God wants, you will be really happy later
1Jesus saw big mobs of people coming to him. So he went up a big hill, and he sat down there to teach them. His followers, the people that wanted to learn about God, they all went close to him, to listen to him. 2Then he started to teach them.
3Jesus said, “Some people know that they need God very much. All right, God will take those people into his family, and they will be really happy.
4Some people are very sad now, and they cry, but God will make them feel better, and they will be really happy.#Isaiah 61:2
5Some people know that they are weak, and they don’t try to be important. But later God will give them everything in the world, and they will be really happy.
6Some people really want to live the right way, and they want other people to live the right way too. They think about that more than anything else, like they are really hungry and thirsty for it to happen. All right, God will give them what they want, and they will be really happy.
7Some people feel sorry for other people, and they don’t do payback for the bad things those other people did. All right, God will do the same. He will feel sorry for those people that feel sorry for other people. He will not do payback to them for the bad things they did, and they will be really happy.
8Some people never want to do bad things. These people will see God, and they will be really happy.#Psalm 24:3-4
9Some people help other people to settle down, stop arguing, and agree with each other. God will tell those people, ‘You are my own kids.’ And they will be really happy.
10Some people do what is right, but some other people don’t like it, and they make trouble for those good people. But God takes those good people into his family, and they will be really happy.
11And you too. Some people will not like you following me, and they will say bad things about you, and they will make trouble for you. Sometimes people will tell lies about you. But don’t worry. Be really happy when they do that.#1 Peter 4:14 12You see, if they do these bad things to you now, God will give you lots of good things later, in heaven. So you can be really happy, no matter what they do. Remember the stories from a long time ago, about the men that told everyone God’s message. Some people did bad things to those men too.”#2 Chronicles 36:16; Acts 7:52
Christians are like salt
13Jesus said, “You people that follow me are like salt for everybody on the earth. You know, salt helps food taste good and stops it from rotting. Well, if you follow me properly, you will live in a way that helps people to be good. Yes, salt is good, but if it stops tasting like salt, then it is no good any more. Nobody can use it for anything. They chuck it away, and everyone walks on it. So don’t be like that sort of salt. Don’t stop following me.”
Christians have to be like a light for people
14And Jesus said, “You people that follow me have to live the right way and show people the way to God. It is like you are a light for everybody in the world. You know, if people build houses up on a hill, then everyone can see them clearly. You are like those houses on a hill. Everyone can see you clearly. They can know if you are good, or if you are bad.#John 8:12; 9:5 15Nobody ever lights a candle and then puts a bowl over it. No way. They put that candle up in a high place, so that its light shines out everywhere.#Mark 4:21; Luke 8:16; 11:33 16You have to be like that candle. You have to let everyone see that you are following me. They will see all the good things you do, and they will say good things about God, your father in heaven. They will say, ‘God is really great.’ ”#1 Peter 2:12
The law and the messages in God’s book are really important
17Jesus kept on teaching them. He said, “You know the law that Moses wrote. Well, I didn’t come here to take away that law. And you know all the messages that God gave to his men, the messages that they wrote in his book for us. I didn’t come here to take away those messages either. But I came here to show that the law and those messages are right, and to make those things happen, just like those men wrote. 18Listen. God’s book is really important. Everything in it will happen. You know, the earth and sky are always here. They don’t change. Well, just like that, God’s word and his laws will not change, not even a little bit. They will stay the same until everything in God’s book happens.#Luke 16:17 19So if you think to yourself, ‘I can break just one little rule,’ and if you teach other people to think like that too, then later on, in God’s family in heaven, nobody will respect you. They will say, ‘You are no good.’ But if you don’t break any of God’s rules, and if you teach other people to follow them too, then later on, in God’s family in heaven, everyone will respect you. And they will say, ‘You are really good.’ 20I’m telling you this, if you don’t do everything that God says, then you can’t come into his family. You know that mob called Pharisees. They are really strong for our Jewish law. And you know the mob that teach our Jewish law. Well, you have to follow God’s law better than all of that Pharisee mob and that law teacher mob.”
Don’t get angry
21Jesus said, “You know, the teachers of God’s law tell you what God told the people, a long time ago. They say, ‘Don’t murder anybody. If you murder somebody, then you have to go to court, and the judge will punish you.’#Exodus 20:13; Deuteronomy 5:17 22But now I’m telling you this. Don’t even get angry with anybody. That is bad too. If you are angry with somebody, God will be your judge, and he will punish you. Or if you call somebody bad names, you will end up in God’s court. And if you get really angry with somebody, and if you tell them, ‘You are a stupid fool,’ God will judge you for that, and he can send you into the big fire called hell.”
Fix up problems with other people
23Jesus said to the people, “Suppose you go to give a gift to God, and you take it to God’s ceremony house, but then you remember that somebody is upset with you about something. 24You have to leave your gift there at God’s house, and you have to go and find that other person straight away. You have to tell them that you are sorry, and you have to fix up that problem with them, so that you can both be friends again. After that, you can go back and give your gift to God.
25If somebody blames you and says that you have done something wrong, and if they start to take you to court about it, then you have to talk to that person straight away, and fix up that problem. Both of you have to agree about what is right. Do that even while you are going along the road to the court. If you don’t do that, then that person will blame you in the court, and the judge might agree with them and tell the police to grab you and put you in jail. 26And you will stay in jail until you give that other person all the money that you owe them. That’s for sure.”
Don’t even think about doing bad things
27Jesus said, “You know, the teachers of God’s law tell you this, ‘Don’t sleep with a woman that is not your wife, as if you are married to her.’#Exodus 20:14; Deuteronomy 5:18 28But now I’m telling you this. If you look at a woman that is not your wife, and you think about sleeping with her, that is bad too. If you think about doing that, you are going wrong. Thinking about it is just as bad as doing it. 29You see, if things in your life push you to go wrong, then you have to get rid of them, even if it is hard to do. Be careful about how you use your eyes. If you see something that gets you to go wrong, then stop looking. That might be hard to do, like you are pulling out your eye and throwing it away. But it is better to lose one eye here on the earth now, than to keep 2 eyes and go to the bad place called hell.#Matthew 18:9; Mark 9:47 30And think about how you use your hand. If you do something with your hand that gets you to go wrong, then pull your hand away. That might be hard to do, like you are cutting off your hand and throwing it away. But it is better to lose one hand here on the earth now, than to keep 2 hands and go to hell.”#Matthew 18:8; Mark 9:43
Husbands and wives have to stay together
31Then Jesus said, “And God’s law says, ‘If a man wants to leave his wife, then he can write a divorce letter and give it to her. Then they aren’t married any more.’#Deuteronomy 24:1-4; Matthew 19:7; Mark 10:4 32But now I’m telling you this, husbands and wives have to stay married to each other. Only if a man’s wife sleeps with another man, as if he is her husband, only then can her husband divorce her. But if a wife never does that, then her husband can’t divorce her. If he divorces her, he is forcing her to marry another man and sleep with him, and that is wrong. And the man that marries her is doing wrong too.”#Matthew 19:9; Mark 10:11-12; Luke 16:18; 1 Corinthians 7:10-11
Don’t use God’s name to get people to believe you
33Jesus said to the people, “You know, sometimes people promise something to somebody, and to get people to believe them, they say, ‘by God’. That shows that they want God to punish them if they don’t do it. And the law teachers tell you that God said, ‘If you say, “by God”, then you have to do what you promised.’#Leviticus 19:12; Numbers 30:2; Deuteronomy 23:21 34But now I’m telling you this. If you promise something, don’t say, ‘by God’, to get people to believe you. And don’t say, ‘by heaven’, when you promise something. God is the boss in heaven, so that is just like saying, ‘by God’.#James 5:12; Isaiah 66:1; Matthew 23:22 35And don’t say, ‘by the earth’, when you promise something. God controls the earth too. And don’t say, ‘by Jerusalem’, when you promise something. Jerusalem is God’s special city. He is the big boss there.#Isaiah 66:1; Psalm 48:2 36And don’t say, ‘by my head’, when you promise something. You can’t change the colour of even one hair on your head, to turn it black or turn it white. 37Look, just say what is properly true. When yes is the true answer, just say, ‘Yes.’ And when no is the true answer, just say, ‘No.’ The devil, the boss over the bad spirits, he tries to get you to say more than that, but don’t do it. Don’t say anything more to try to get people to believe you.”
Don’t do payback
38Jesus kept on talking to them. He said, “You know, the teachers of God’s law tell you this, ‘If somebody hits your eye and blinds it, then this is the payback, you have to hit one of that person’s eyes and blind it.’ And the teachers of God’s law say, ‘If somebody knocks out your tooth, then this is the payback, you have to knock out one of that person’s teeth.’ That’s what they say.#Exodus 21:24; Leviticus 24:20; Deuteronomy 19:21 39But now I’m telling you this, don’t do payback at all. If somebody does something bad to you, don’t do payback to them. Somebody might hit you on one side of your face. All right, let them hit you on the other side of your face too. 40Or if somebody takes you to court to get your shirt, all right, give that person your shirt, and give them your coat too. 41Or a soldier might tell you, ‘Carry my bag for a kilometre.’ All right, help him more than that. Carry it for 2 kilometres. 42Or if somebody asks you for something, give it to them. Or if they want to borrow something from you, let them have it.”
You have to love everyone
43Jesus said, “You know, those teachers tell you this, ‘Love your friends and hate your enemies.’#Leviticus 19:18 44But I’m telling you to do more than that. You have to love your enemies too. And if anyone makes trouble for you, pray to God and ask him to be good to them. 45If you do that, you will be just like your father in heaven. He gets the sun to shine on everybody, bad people as well as good people. And he gets the rain to fall on everybody, good people and bad people too.
46You see, if you only love the people that love you, that is nothing. Even bad people do that. God will not give you anything for only loving people that love you. 47And if you only talk to your friends, that is nothing. Everybody talks to their friends, even people that don’t believe in God do that. So if you only talk to your friends, you are no better than those people.
48So this is what I say. You have to be properly good, just like your father in heaven is properly good.”#Leviticus 19:2; Deuteronomy 18:13